A witch and a bitch with an herbal itch - and an overactive imagination.
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2017 Solar Eclipse Thoughts

August 23rd, 2017

Pick any superlative adjective … it was all that and more.

We were lucky enough to be in the path of totality so invited friends who weren’t to join us on the deck for a day of fun and a (probably) once-in-a-lifetime experience. At the time I issued the invitation, no one knew what the weather was going to be like. Summer afternoons in Georgia can be anywhere from perfectly clear, to partly cloudy, to popup showers/thunderstorms, to completely covered up. Even the morning of, the “local” (Atlanta) meteorologists were predicting 30% cloud cover in the areas of totality in Georgia. It was a crapshoot.

We lucked out and as guests started arriving, it was perfectly clear. Which meant wonderful viewing but on a deck that gets 12 hours of direct sun, it was toasty! Adult beverages, lots of conversation, and some guitar jamming by my husband and a friend … it was a party!

I did, however, watch some clouds building in the south with a little apprehension. Would they hold off?

A light lunch, then sky-watching – it was still clear above us. It started shortly after 1:00 p.m. I wanted photos but had read that taking a direct photo of the sun can harm the camera lens on a phone, so ingeniously (I thought), I taped a lens from a pair of viewing glasses over my phone’s lens. Nope. Just an orange blur. I even tried the same thing on our regular camera. Not quite as blurry as the phone but still didn’t show anything of import. The photo below was taken with my phone at totality without any filter. The sun’s corona still overloaded the camera so you can’t even tell the moon is in front!

I’m still heaving a big sigh. However, we do have a lot of trees which become a good filter if you look down, rather than up. See the half-moons?

The moment (a little over a minute) of totality was probably the most awesome thing. The lighting was a nice twilight (ah, a little relief from the heat!) but the silence. No birdsong, no bugs’ buzz, not even the usual slight background hum from the 4-lane four miles away. It wasn’t quite dark enough for the night critters to start their song, either. Just a couple of quiet “wows” from us.

The “diamond” appeared (the first glimpse of the sun as the moon moves out of the way) and that moment was almost over. We were still quiet until…a small plane flew by. That ruined the moment and it went back to being a party again. The clouds finally made it this far north about an hour after totality (we even had a very brief shower) and obscured the rest of the eclipse but that was okay.

I didn’t experience any “woo” during the eclipse but I can tell you that neither my husband nor I slept at all well that night. We’re wondering if it messed with our circadian rhythms a little. Thankfully, it was just one night – I slept like a log last night!

I’ve been thinking about that day since then. Unless we travel (which we might), husband and I will never see a total eclipse again in our lifetimes. (If we travel, I will definitely buy a real solar filter for the camera.) But what I really took away from it:

There were ten people on our deck that day. All friends of ours, to be sure (which automatically means they’re cool people), but they’d never met each other before. Christians, Pagans of different paths, Agnostics, and Atheists all intermingling, enjoying themselves, and making new friends. I wish that would happen more in the wider world.

The Wheel of the Year – A Rant

August 14th, 2017

Wheel of the Year

/begin rant

August first was Lugnasadh, Lammas, First Harvest, whatever you want to call it. A friend who also lives in the Southeastern United States posted on Facebook that he wasn’t celebrating … it was still summer. And I agreed. We were both called on the carpet (somewhat) for saying such.

FYI, the “Cross Quarter” holidays aren’t celebrated by all, and sometimes not on the same date. Lughnasadh/Lammas and the other three cross-quarters holidays were started in climes much more northerly than mine and by cultures who relied on farming for their living. When I lived farther north, around August 1st was indeed the beginnings of harvest and although the days were still hot, there was a feeling that Fall wasn’t far away. First harvest around here happens about mid-July. I saw the neighboring farmer harvesting part of his kitchen garden then. He cut the first crop of hay the middle of June and is now growing his third crop. So, August first? Mid-harvest.

The other thing that chaps my ass is the date. You do realize the calendar by which we now live only dates back to the 16th century (1582, to be exact) but wasn’t adopted by all areas of the world until the 18th century? I can’t speak for my ancestors, but I’m willing to bet they celebrated their first harvest on different days. Weather is a huge factor in farming. More or less sun, more or less rain (or snow) affects when you would be able to get your seeds or seedlings into the ground and the length of the growing season, all affecting when you’d be able to gather your crops. Horrible weather year? Might not be a celebration at all because there was nothing to harvest so nothing to celebrate.

I apply the same sort of logic to the Equinoxes and Solstices. The “official” dates for each vary by a few hours one way or the other due to the tilt of the Earth and the not-exactly-365-day-year, making them fall somewhere in a 2-day period, but they’re calculated by when the sun crosses the Equator; and when the Sun is at its farthest points from the Equator. I don’t live at the Equator. I’d also be willing to bet my ancestors celebrated these events when they happened where they lived. I celebrate the Equinoxes and Solstices when they happen here. I go by the “longest day, longest night, and equal night” definitions. As an example, the true Fall Equinox here, September 26th, is as close as one can get – less than a minute off equality. The official date is September 22nd.

I don’t celebrate Cross Quarter days because they really hold no meaning for me – I am decidedly a city girl in that regard. (Samhain? The veil’s thin around here every day and I venerate those who have gone before every day.)

I can’t recall a time I ever argued with someone else’s holiday. If “First Harvest” is August first for you, have at it. If you want to celebrate the other holidays according to the calendar, good for you. But don’t climb in my shit because I don’t celebrate as or when you do.

//end rant

 

Catching Up

July 28th, 2017

It’s been a (long) while since I’ve posted anything here. Quite frankly, I haven’t had a lot to say but thought I should at least let you know I’m still alive.

Apart from the clickety-punch (which is never-ending), I’ve kept myself busy:

  • Bemoaning my garden. Last year was a horrid year because of the drought. This year is just as bad in the opposite direction. We’ve had about 150% of normal rain and everything is drowning. The beds are pools of mud. (It’s pouring as I’m typing.) About the only thing growing well is the grass, which I’m being hard-pressed to keep out of the beds. On the bright side, I don’t have to fill the fountain!
  • Having some things done around the house. The writing tent is no longer a tent but has a permanent roof. (I have to come up with a better name, now.) I’d post a picture but see the above statement about it pouring. There’s still a bit of staining to do so it completely matches the house but again, the rain… My handyman has a list of things I’d like done (next up is making hard surface walkways from the house to the garden steps and over to the compost bin so I can avoid chiggers) and he’ll eventually get around to it all but the rain…
  • While fiction is still on the back burner (but not off the stove), I’ve been researching for the next herb book. Not certain of the title or format, yet, but it’s going to be a look at herb use through history. It’s been a fascinating (and sometimes frightening) read thus far. It’s also been a sometimes difficult read. English spelling wasn’t standardized until about the eighteenth century so I have to “translate”. There’s also the “fun” of reading that same non-standard English printed in blackletter.
  • Preparing to do my first show in many years. I’ll be at the Appalachian Renaissance Faire October 14-15. While I won’t have nearly as many products as I once did (mostly my books and oils with a few other odds and ends), I have to revamp some things to fit the “new” shop.
  • Still trying to learn the Herbal Tarot. It’s not going well. I can tell you if I’ve pulled a card before but what the meaning is? Still have to look, even seven months in. Rune reading is far easier for me, and I’ve been doing that for people.
  • I got pulled into the time-suck of genealogy research. I’d started maybe a decade ago and tabled it but my kid’s interest prompted me to go back. The really fun thing about it? I’ve always wondered where my witchiness came from. While I believe anyone can be a witch if the propensity is there, my gut feeling was there was one in my family tree, somewhere. I knew it wasn’t my maternal side – I know that side well and someone who was “not right” would have been talked about. (I mean, apart from my gay great-uncle who was only spoken of in whispers, when they spoke of a man who “chose not to marry”.) Last week, I was able to trace part of my father’s side – of which I know nothing because the asshole wasn’t around. Got to my 2nd great-grandmother, whose family photo was posted by another person on Ancestry. There was something about her, y’know? While I was musing, I heard, very faintly, “ye found me, child”. I sent thanks, then let out a whoop loud enough to scare the cats. I’ll never know much about her but just knowing she’s there is good enough.

So, as you can see, I’m still here, continually caffeinating to keep up with it all – and our crazy cats. You can generally find me posting interesting snippets of my research on Twitter or Facebook.

My New Charm

April 14th, 2017

No, I haven’t changed my personality. 😉

As background, for years I’ve worn several things on a necklace – always under my shirt. (I have conservative clients. They wouldn’t understand.) However, my thoughts on some things have changed and what I wore no longer really had meaning to me. It was time for something new.

I really like the idea of a pentacle (the four elements plus spirit, surrounded by will) but wearing one of those openly seems to immediately identify you as Wiccan, which I certainly am not. But what to wear?

If you’ve been following along on my Facebook page, you know I’ve been learning the Herbal Tarot. Early on, I set the companion book aside because it’s geared toward herbalists who consult. I don’t. But one thing in the introduction (page ten) struck home: “[…] the ancient Greek letter theta. The circle divided into two halves signifies spirit-matter held together by the underlying principle of Divine Spirit.” I interpreted that a little differently. Body and mind, surrounded by spirit – the principle of holistic health (and witchcraft, if you think about it).

The text shows the lowercase theta. If I’d been thinking a little harder, the upper case theta would more completely show that connection – it has a little space between the horizontal bar and the surrounding circle. There is leakage between the mind and body. But then the charm would’ve had to have a back, been heavier, and I wouldn’t have liked it as much.

It took about five seconds to decide where I was going to get my new charm. My friend, Jen, introduced me to the work of Aidan Wachter several years ago and I’ve been in love with his work since. About a month later, this arrived in the mail:

Isn’t it beautiful? Go look at his website, or his Facebook page, or his Twitter feed. What he does is amazing!

Now I have a charm I can wear on the outside of my clothes, with an explanation even the most conservative of people will understand. Nestled next to it is my father-in-law/husband’s first wedding ring. Yes, there’s a story there, too, but only the fact that it was my husband’s needs to be told.

By Wolfsbane and Mandrake Root – A Review

March 3rd, 2017

When the publication of this book was announced, I got excited. Yet another book to add to my collection on poisonous plants! In addition, Ms. Draco is a respected author in the occult world.

Once through this small book (a whopping 96 pages), I was both pleased and disappointed.

The pleased: She gives a very nice history of poisoning, detailing instances from Socrates’ famed ingestion of hemlock, through the times of the Roman Empire, to the Borgias and de’ Medicis of the Renaissance, poisonous intrigue in the English courts, and finishing with various accounts of poisonings in the 18th century (which, naturally, were mostly perpetrated by women 😉 ).

An entire chapter was devoted to the “Proving Tree”, which was a “metal stand (often attached to the salt dish) that had from five to fifteen different ‘stone’ pendants hanging from its branches.” For a few centuries, it was thought that dipping one stone or another into food would either detect or neutralize any poison found in food. Servants would have been a part of that “Proving Tree” because several would taste their master’s food before it even got to him.

The final chapter, “Cursing v Bottling”, was useful. She goes to great lengths to discourage someone from cursing which, in a book for public consumption, is a good thing. A milder retaliation is bottling and she’s got some good ideas in there.

The disappointment: the listing of the plants themselves. While the information presented is, for the most part, accurate, only a chemistry buff would be interested in the list of toxic chemicals in each plant. I’m used to reading scientific papers and I found my eyelids drooping at points. Foot- or endnotes would have made reading easier, rather than citing sources within the text.

It’s obvious this book wasn’t reviewed by someone who is an herbalist prior to publication. One example: she cites “Margaret Grieve” as the author of A Modern Herbal (Chapter 3). The initial “M” stands for Maud.

Another: she lists “Bryony black and white” as Bryonia dioica. B. dioica is red (or sometimes white) bryony, while white is B. alba. Black bryony is in another genus (Dioscorea) altogether, although no less toxic.

And one final nitpicking: all but one of the Latin binomials are in lower case, sometimes without the species name attached (making it a monomial). In case you didn’t know, the genus is always capitalized, the species not. If all species in a genus are considered, then ‘spp.’ should be after the genus.

So, I’ll give this 3.5 stars of 5. It presented a lot of good information on poisonous herbs but there are other books out there that present it better (a couple she used for reference and cited in the bibliography would be a good start). Buy it for the history lesson and how to bottle rather than curse.

 

 

Tulum

February 16th, 2017

As I said last week, it’s taken me a while to process my visit to Tulum. I’m not certain I’ve still fully grasped everything, but here goes…

(Note: most of what I’m saying here is from our tour guide who, in addition to being an archaeological guide, is part Mayan. Take it as fact, or not.)

 

First, Tulum was built on the highest point on the Yucatan Peninsula and the temple – El Castillo – sits almost at the edge of the bluff. (Husband, who grew up along the coast, estimates that in its heyday, it was probably visible five or six miles out to sea.) And what a perfect site to build on – so defensible! Landward, it’s surrounded by mangrove swamps which, in addition to being almost impossible to move through without a lot of machete work, are inhabited by animals like crocodiles and venomous snakes.

Thankfully, we were there on a dry, sunny day before the rainy season. Our guide told us Tulum means “stinky soil” and that would definitely apply when things were really wet. Yet, the official site says Tulum means “wall”. I think either would apply.

One you’ve made it to the wall, you don’t have much of a choice of entries unless you want to try to scale the wall. There are only five gateways, and they’re tiny – even for a small person like me. Husband had to duck and I saw several people going through sideways. (The exit is now a path with stairs, thanks to the restoration.)

Once through the gate, you see a beautiful clearing with the ruins. (I can’t imagine the work that went into building the city, much less uncovering it again.) Not many structures are still standing and those that are, aren’t fully intact. But compared to today’s cities, it’s small. The entire site within the wall & up to the cliff is only about 300 acres – that’s about 1/3 the size of Olympic Park in London!

The first thing that hit me was the silence. Even with a bunch of tourists walking around and several tour guides giving their talks, it was so peaceful! The first word that popped into my head was “sacred”. Makes sense. The Mayan were very careful with their land, living in harmony with it rather than trying to force it to their will.

Tulum was a trading port – one of the most important in the Mayan Empire. If you look at where it’s situated on a map, you can see that it’s in a perfect spot for people to bring things both by land and sea. There’s a natural cove at the base of the cliff, making it easy for boats. Although, I wouldn’t want to haul my goods up or down that path! I would love to see a different site (leaving the ruins as they are), set up as it originally was, with re-enactors. At least, re-enactors doing what we think they would’ve been doing 800 years ago. We can thank the conquistadors for destroying virtually everything related to the Mayan culture.

Some pics of the ruins, including El Castillo*:

*Those two lumps on El Castillo (better in the closeup) are the sacrifice stones. The person would’ve been laid on their back over those two stacks of rocks so the priest could more easily go up under the rib cage rather than trying to go through it to get to the heart. Ouch.

As an earth witch, I wear moccasins when I can’t go barefoot so I can feel what’s happening around me. While I still got the feeling of “sacred”, I didn’t get the energy buzz I normally get, which puzzled me. Husband and I talked about it later and we think it was because of all the underground water. The Yucatan Peninsula is riddled with underground rivers, and cenotes are all over the place, providing fresh water – if you want to climb down for it! Which, of course, they had to. Water seems to negate earth energy for me. I’m curious what I would’ve felt if we’d been allowed on the ruins themselves. Stone has a long memory. (But thankfully, we weren’t. I’d hate to see them destroyed any further.)

Unfortunately, the number of people walking around sort of kept the wildlife away. According to our guide, there are several coati-mundi living there, including two that aren’t shy. I was so disappointed I didn’t see them! But here’s a cool bird and a squirrel that didn’t immediately split when I got close:

Another disappointment: our guide said there were native Maya selling things they’d made in the village attached to the historical site. We would’ve definitely bought something if we’d seen anything we were certain was handmade but all the wood carvings looked like they’d have a sticker that said, “hecho en China” (made in China). So, we didn’t.

The place fascinated me. And I still want to go to Chichén Itzá.

Our First (and Last) Cruise

February 10th, 2017

Yes, it’s been a while. Not much has been happening in my world, unless you count my (hopefully) learning how to read the Herbal Tarot and starting the research for a new book. We did, however, go on vacation last week, taking our first-ever cruise.

Not having any real clue whether we’d enjoy it or not, or which was the best line, I chose a 5-day, 4-night cruise with Carnival. (It’s actually a lot shorter than that, leaving late Monday afternoon & returning first-thing Friday morning. So, more like 3-plus days, 4 nights. That suited me, too.)

Our first stop was Key West – someplace I’d always wanted to visit. Mostly to go to the Hemingway House to see the six-toed kitties. Boy howdy, do they have cats! 53 currently, but not all with six toes on the front paws. Some had the normal number, but one had 24 toes (six on all four paws – a rarity)! Did you know? They have their own on-call veterinarian, and a cat cemetery on property. All the cats are named after movie stars. I think the top pic is of Betty Grable. Or maybe it’s Marlene Dietrich. (I never could get one in a position to actually see the toes in the picture.)

All cats drink out of toilets, if allowed, right? The bottom of that fountain is a urinal out of the original Sloppy Joe’s. 😀

Key West has a lot more to offer in the way of sightseeing, though. There’s the Truman “Little White House”, some pretty neat trees, and the Key West Museum with awesome sculptures:

Truman White House
Banyan Tree
Kapok Tree
Sculptures at the Key West Museum

Upon our return to the ship, our cabin had already been serviced and we were greeted with a towel animal (a different one each morning):

Poison Ivy is a running joke with friends. You’ll see her in my pics here & there.

Then it was on to Cozumel and our tour to Tulum. (I’d wanted to go to Chichén Itzá but they cancelled that tour.) I’ll have to do a completely separate post on that – I’m still processing what I saw, heard and felt. But, here’s some pics to get you started:

If you have an opportunity, go. It’s one of the most awesome places I’ve been.

As usual with shore excursions, our time was too short everywhere. We had about forty-five minutes in Playa del Carmen before the ferry back to Cozumel. (And got caught in a shower without an umbrella, to boot!) Our tour guide mentioned one of her favorite places in the shopping district – Ah Cacao. Chocolate! Of course, I had to visit – and make a purchase. Unfortunately, that souvenir didn’t last long.

One day at sea (which was windy), then back to Miami and our plane (and drive) home. During that day at sea, we discussed the cruise and whether we’d want to do it again. The staff was extremely friendly, the food wasn’t bad (we wouldn’t consider it gourmet but it was quite edible), and we made new friends. The answer was ‘yes, but on a different line and a room with a balcony’. You see, we’re old folks. Music started blaring at 9am and didn’t stop until very late. There was no where to go on deck that was quiet enough to just enjoy the view without the bass beat pounding its way into your thoughts. Our cabin was on the lowest deck, right above the deck they use for entering/exiting the ship. The noise associated with docking started as soon as the ship made port, usually at dark-thirty. A room higher up would eliminate that problem.

The answer was ‘yes, we’d do it again’ until I woke up Saturday morning still feeling like I was on a ship. Thinking it was temporary, I wasn’t too worried about reeling around the house. Unfortunately, a week later, I’m still reeling. And it’s really a thing. It’s called Mal de Débarquement Syndrome. (Naturally, I’d be one to get this…) So, no more cruising for me and fingers crossed this eventually goes away. I feel like I’m drunk without any of the benefits of being so!

I’ll write another post on Tulum when I get my thoughts together. In the meantime, it’s back to the grind.

Winter Solstice 2016

December 26th, 2016

If you’ve been following along, you know that the Winter Solstice is my New Year. Naturally, I celebrate the calendar along with everyone else, but the Solstice is when I do all my yearly thinking and planning. I also do a full rune cast to see what the coming year has in store for me. (It looks like a good year!)

One of the things on my bucket list is learn to read tarot. I love my runes but they don’t go into as much detail as cards. I’ve tried several different decks and have never been able to connect with the cards. Earlier this fall, I ran across The Herbal Tarot. Herbal? Hmm. Maybe I could connect with that deck? So, I bought a set, along with the companion book.

The companion book has been shelved. First, it’s aimed toward healers who want to use the deck in a consulting practice and I don’t consult. Second, it’s a wee bit too touchy-feely (and perhaps “love and light”) for my taste. The little book that comes with the deck gives all the information I’d need. (I noticed some of the Latin binomials are misspelled. Just sayin’.)

I quickly discovered the rote memorization ability that has served me well all these years no longer functions as well as it once did. I couldn’t remember a card’s meaning from one day to the next, yet spirit tells me this is something I need to learn. So, another tack, the same one I took with the runes: using them.

I don’t do daily divination for myself anymore. My life is, for the most part, very calm and predictable. (Thank goodness. At this age, I’d hate for it to be anything but.) I only cast the runes twice a year (at the Solstices) and when spirit prompts me to do so. (Or, if a friend asks for a reading.) So, that won’t work. While doing my annual thinking and planning, I came up with another method.

I’m going to borrow something from my friend, Renee. She’s been learning wire wrapping and chose “A Year of Mastery” as her theme, posting her progress both on her blog and over on her Facebook page. (If you’re a jewelry-type person, you need to check out what she & her husband do. It’s fabulous!)

Starting 1st January, I’m going to pull one card a day, using the universal, “what do we need to know for today?” as my question. I’ll post it, along with my thoughts, on my Facebook page. (Sorry, Twitter. I doubt 140 characters will be enough.) There will be a one week exception: we’re going on vacation (yay!) the end of January. I’m not hauling everything with me.

And…if you want a free reading, pop me an email with your question. It’ll give me some practice at switching my focus from runes to cards. (Note: this offer subject to withdrawal at any time.)

What do we need to know for today?

So, follow along with my Year of Mastery.

Thanksgiving 2016

November 24th, 2016

food-145187_640

On This Thanksgiving, I am grateful for:

 

  •  My health, for without that, nothing is enjoyable
  • The fact that our house and trees have not burnt down in a wildfire (but my heart hurts for those that have)
  • The fact that even in this drought, our well still has water (but my heart hurts for those in Flint, the Standing Rock Tribe and the protestors [and all those downstream from that area], and all the world’s people for whom fresh water is a luxury)
  • The fact that I have a roof over my head and good food to eat (but my heart hurts for those who do not)
  • My readers, who give me a reason to write
  • Our cats, who give me unconditional love (and a lot of laughs)
  • Our friends, near and far (distance being relative here in the country), real-life and not-yet-met-in-person (the meetings will come)
  • My husband, whom I love to the ends of the earth
  • Most of all, I am thankful for my family, for they are not all blood but they are family, nonetheless

Happy Thanksgiving, with love

On Wildfires and Elections

November 17th, 2016

I’m on edge. It’s no surprise but still…

In case you haven’t been paying a whit of attention to the news, there are wildfires throughout the Southeastern United States. It’s no wonder…rain has been scarce and we’re tinder-dry. (I was watching the news a few nights ago when they interviewed a US Forestry Service (USFS) spokesperson. She said they measure moisture on a scale of 0 to 800; 0 being pure water, 800 being the Sahara Desert. She said we’re in the 700s.) So far, we’ve been lucky here. All we’ve gotten is smoke, and even that depends on which way the wind is blowing. See that orange star between two red fire markers? That’s about where we are.

fires_south_11-16-2016Original image from http://wildfiretoday.com/2016/11/16/update-on-six-wildfires-in-the-south-november-16-2016/

This map only shows ten of over two hundred fires burning throughout five states. The red dot to our left is the Rough Ridge Fire which, as of yesterday, had burned nearly 25,000 acres (according to one site, that’s larger than the borough of Manhattan in New York). The Rock Mountain Fire, to our right, almost 7,000. Neither is even close to being contained. They say the Rough Ridge Fire was started by a lightning strike; Rock Mountain was intentional. Why would anyone do such a thing?

And…I’m Earth-sensitive. Normally, I love it. I can take a walk and feel the emotions of the trees, shrubs, ground… Today? Not so much. All the living things are parched – it’s even worse than the drought in 2007. Don’t think plants speak to each other? Those two wildfires are miles away from us, yet our trees are in pain for their brethren. Logically, I know occasional fire is good for a forest (hell, the USFS does controlled burns regularly) but that knowledge doesn’t help their feelings or mine. And there’s nothing I can do to assuage their fears except tell them I’ll do my damnedest to protect them. Both of our outside spigots have hoses hooked up, ready to use should the worst happen. At least, we’ll use them as long as we’re allowed to stay, and as long as our well holds out.

So here I sit, hoping against hope no idiot flicks a lit cigarette butt out a car window; and mentally reviewing what we’d need to snatch if we had to evacuate. (That includes where my heavy leather gloves are kept – Yuri and Sev do not like cat carriers.) I’ve never had to think of such things before.

Add to that the US elections a couple of weeks ago and the ensuing madness … people attacking Muslims, people of color, LGBTQ people just because they think it’s now okay. After all, Mr. Trump talks that way. I am saddened that in 2016, I feel like I live in 1930s Germany.The uncertainty of the future seems worse to me than it ever has and I’ve voted in 10 presidential elections.

I live in a heavily fundamentalist Christian area. Although I’m pretty circumspect about my practices, I am out of the broom closet. I believe my neighbors are reasonable people but what if one of them opened their mouth to someone not so reasonable? I have very strong wards … and a gun I’m not afraid to use. Even thinking about something like that is very uncomfortable but I was a Girl Scout once: Be Prepared.

So, if I’m quieter than usual, you know why.